About Historic Royal Palaces
We are a team of people who love and look after six of the most wonderful palaces in the world: the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, the Banqueting House, Kensington Palace, Kew Palace and Hillsborough Castle and Gardens.
We create space for spirits to stir and be stirred. We want everyone to feel welcome and accepted. We tell stories about the monarchs you know, and the lives you don’t. We let people explore and we set minds racing.
Membership of Historic Royal Palaces is a charitable donation which allows us to fulfil our aims as an organisation. We raise all our own funds and depend on the support of our visitors, members, donors, sponsors and volunteers to give the palaces a future, for everyone.
Registered address: Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, KT8 9AU. Registered Charity Number: 1068852About us
Terms and Conditions
On applying to become a member of Historic Royal Palaces, you are agreeing to our terms and conditions.
Acceptance and processing of your membership application and receipt of your membership fee creates a valid and binding contract between you and Historic Royal Palaces, which is governed by these terms and conditions.
We reserve the right to change these terms and conditions at any time.
1. Membership Categories
Historic Royal Palaces membership categories and the number of people they cover:
- Individual membership - applies to one named adult aged 16 years or older
- Joint membership - applies to two named adults aged 16 years or older
- Family Group membership – applies to a family of two named adults and up to six named children aged 5 to 15 years
- Family 1 Adult membership – applies to a family of one named adult and up to six named children aged 5 to 15 years
Children under the age of 5 can enter our palaces for free and do not need to be included on a membership.
We do not offer a concessionary membership category.
2. Upgrading Palace Tickets
If you have already purchased an admission ticket then you may use it to upgrade to membership within two weeks of your visit date.
You can upgrade your ticket(s) towards a membership, at the point of joining the scheme, using a maximum of the following ticket combinations:
- Individual membership - one adult ticket
- Joint membership - two adult tickets
- Family 1 Adult membership – one adult ticket
- Family 2 Adult membership – two adult tickets
If you do not have an adult ticket to put towards a membership, Concession tickets are also eligible. You can upgrade your palace admission tickets within two weeks of your visit date to annual or life membership. Proof of ticket purchase is required in order to upgrade tickets to membership. This can be in the physical form of the tickets themselves, or by providing the reference number in your booking confirmation email.
- Tickets from multiple separate visits cannot be upgraded cumulatively against a single membership.
- Event tickets cannot be upgraded to annual membership
- Palace admission tickets purchased through a third party cannot be upgraded to annual membership, only those bought directly from Historic Royal Palaces.
- Palace admission tickets cannot be upgraded towards gift membership.
3. MEMBER BENEFITS
Members are entitled, upon presentation of a valid membership card, access to discretionary benefits.
The membership and any associated benefits are non-transferable and can only be used by the named member(s) on the membership card.
Historic Royal Palaces may, from time to time, review the range of benefits on offer to members and reserves the right to alter membership benefits and entry rights.
3.1. Visiting the palaces as a member
We require that all visitors, including members, book palace visits in advance. This enables us to manage the number of people on site and ensures everyone can visit safely. Member tickets can be reserved through our Member Login.
You will be asked to present your member ticket booking and membership card on arrival at the main entrance point at each site.
A photograph or photocopy of your membership card will not be accepted to gain entry to the palaces.
For new members who have joined online, you will be able to visit the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace and Hillsborough Castle and Gardens immediately (within opening hours) by showing your email confirmation as proof of your membership, until you receive your membership number. A pre-booked ticket is required to visit Kensington Palace during exhibition periods. Your membership number will be sent to you as soon as possible via email.
- If you have forgotten your membership card please make your way on first arrival to an onsite ticket office. A temporary membership card can be issued for you. Please bring a form of identification which matches the name(s) on the membership, along with your booking confirmation email for your visit.
- If you have lost your card, please email [email protected] so that a replacement card can be issued and sent to you.
3.2. Member discounts
As a member you will receive a 10% discount in our shops, cafes and restaurants.*
Please note that your membership and any associated benefits are non-transferable and can only be used by the named member(s) on the membership card.
* In our cafés and restaurants: 10% discount excludes alcohol and cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer. In our retail settings: 10% discount cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer.* Other exclusions may apply.
3.3. Kew Palace
Please note Kew Palace is set within the grounds of Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. There is an additional charge to access the gardens, in order to reach the Palace.
As a member you benefit from a 10% discount on admission into Kew Gardens, in which Kew Palace is situated. This allows you to visit Kew Palace, Queen Charlotte's Cottage and the Great Pagoda during their seasonal opening hours, as well as access to Kew Gardens.
Discounted tickets can be purchased via Royal Botanic Gardens. A valid Historic Royal Palaces membership card must be presented on admission.
To book, please follow these steps:
- Visit Royal Botanic Gardens Kew
- Click on ‘Book tickets’, then ‘Book your time slot’
- Select 'All Other Visitors'
- Select the date and time you would like to visit
- Enter your Historic Royal Palaces members-only discount code when the promotional code box is offered, which will provide you with the option to purchase tickets for a discounted rate.
3.4. Life membership benefits
In addition to the benefits listed above, life members are also welcome to bring one free unnamed guest with individual life membership and two unnamed guests with joint life membership.
When booking a visit through our website, a member ticket must be booked for the unnamed guest as well as the member, in order to guarantee entry.
4. Membership Term
Membership of Historic Royal Palaces is valid for 12 consecutive months. For memberships purchased before 30 March 2023, members joining by Direct Debit for the first time enjoyed an offer of 15 months of membership for the price of 12. Once purchased (unless cancelled within 14 days), the membership will run for the full term until the expiry date and is not extendable.
New membership cards are posted within 28 days of purchase, with materials sent by second class post. For memberships registering non-UK addresses, this may take longer. Please contact the Membership Team if you have not received your membership card and welcome pack within 40 days of purchase.
We will do our utmost to communicate the closure or part closure to any of our properties. Please check our palace pages in advance of your visit, where you will find information pertaining to opening hours and any general closures.
Membership of Historic Royal Palaces is a charitable donation and is therefore non-refundable under the guidelines of the Charity Commission, to whom we are accountable. We cannot offer partial or full refunds or extensions in the event of unforeseen or planned palace closures.
In the case of Life memberships, no refunds will be given to members who are unable to use their membership at any stage of their subscription.
5. Data Protection
When you apply for membership, and while you remain a member, we will retain your personal data including your name and address to fulfil the membership services to you and for our own analysis, in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
Your membership holds a unique number, which is used to book member palace entry. We may use the data to see how many of our members visit each of our palaces and how often.
While you are an active member you will receive essential communications from the Membership Team - primarily by email (or by post where this is not possible), to fulfil your membership subscription. These will include your member welcome, events of interest and our member magazine, Inside Story, distributed three times a year.
We are keen to encourage our members to visit. As a result, in due course the data may start to be used in this way so we can suggest new places to visit, based on your visiting patterns.
You can unsubscribe from receiving membership communications by email or by post. To do so, please use the 'unsubscribe' link at the bottom of our emails or contact us via [email protected]. Once we have received your request, we will take steps to cease using your information in this way.
We may still need to contact you concerning the administration of your membership, and we may contact you in the future with special offers for you to consider re-joining as a member.
6. Gift Membership
Historic Royal Palaces gift membership can be purchased online by credit or debit card.
Gift memberships cannot be purchased by Direct Debit.
Palace admission tickets cannot be upgraded towards the cost of purchasing gift membership.
The expiry date of gift membership vouchers cannot be extended, and once purchased cannot be refunded.
7. PAYMENT FOR MEMBERSHIP
We reserve the right to amend the price of membership subscriptions on an annual basis.
7.1. Credit/Debit card payments
The credit/debit card information you provide us for a membership transaction is used solely for the purpose of processing that transaction.
We cannot accept credit/debit card payments by email and we will decline to accept payment by this means.
We cannot accept charity vouchers towards membership, such as Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) vouchers, as these cannot be used to purchase goods or services as stipulated on the reverse of the voucher.
We do however accept charity bank cheques as these are drawn on a bank sort code and account number, and look and behave like a normal cheque.
7.2. Direct Debit payments
Direct Debit payments are made annually in full from the UK bank account of the lead member on a membership. We accept Direct Debit payment for annual membership categories, excluding Gift memberships. Life memberships cannot be paid for by Direct Debit.
Please note the first year's payment for membership may be taken up to 6 months after joining.
We will contact you to inform you of the exact collection date or of any changes to the amount, date or frequency of the Direct Debit at least 10 days in advance of payment.
If the payment of membership by Direct Debit is unsuccessful, we reserve the right to suspend membership. Suspension will be lifted once full payment is received or arranged.
Please see section 16 for information on cancelling your membership if paying by Direct Debit.
7.3. Direct Debit Guarantee
All Direct Debit payments are covered by the Direct Debit Guarantee.
The Guarantee is offered by all banks and building societies that accept instructions to pay Direct Debits.
The Guarantee covers Direct Debit payments. It cannot be used to address contractual disputes between you and the billing organisation.
8. Overseas Members
If you have purchased a membership but live overseas, we will post your membership card to you but delivery may take longer than 28 days.
Please be aware that Inside Story magazine will be sent digitally but can only be sent to overseas members who have consented to receive communications by email.
9. Membership Cards
Our system is set up to issue one card per membership; if you would prefer to have a second card please contact us via [email protected].
Membership and any associated benefits are non-transferable and can only be used by the named member(s) on the membership card.
Please bring your membership card whenever you visit a Historic Royal Palaces site. A photograph or photocopy of your membership card will not be accepted.
10. Member Events
Historic Royal Palaces members benefit from access to exclusive member-only events. Member-only events take place throughout the year across our palaces, and are advertised on our website, through our email communications and through Inside Story magazine.
Membership does not guarantee the availability of tickets to member-only events. All events have a limited capacity. Tickets are subject to availability and sold on a first come, first served basis. Allocations of tickets cannot be held in advance of the advertised sale date.
The number of tickets which can be purchased for a member-only event is restricted to the number of people listed on the membership.
All attendees to member-only events must hold a valid membership at the time of the event.
When booking for a member-only event, please advise us at the time of booking of any additional requirements so that we can accommodate any specific individual needs.
It is not possible to refund tickets for member-only events if the member is unable to attend the event for any reason. If it becomes necessary to cancel an event, we will contact ticket holders to arrange a refund or transfer.
11. Magic Garden
Entry to the Magic Garden at Hampton Court Palace is included in Historic Royal Palaces membership.
Please check the Magic Garden opening hours in advance of your visit.
Membership entitles only those named on the membership to enter. Any additional guests will be required to purchase additional tickets.
12. Gift Aid
As a charity, by giving us consent to claim Gift Aid on your membership we can receive an extra 25% from HMRC at no extra cost to you.
You can sign up for Gift Aid if you are eligible as a UK taxpayer, by signing and dating the declaration on the membership form. Alternatively you can contact us to tell us that you would like to Gift Aid your membership.
Please notify the Membership Team if you wish to cancel this declaration, change your name or home address or no longer pay sufficient Income Tax and/or Capital Gains Tax.
If you verbally consent we will confirm that Gift Aid will be collected in your name in your welcome letter. Please note that Gift Aid cannot be claimed on life or gift memberships.
13. Contact Details
We request that you keep your preferred contact details up to date. Historic Royal Palaces cannot be held responsible for any communications that are missed due to a change of address, whether electronic or postal.
14. Changes in Membership Category
If, during the course of your membership subscription you wish to change your category of membership to one with a higher cost, please contact us and we will arrange to take payment for the difference in price.
If you wish to change to a membership category with a lower value than your existing one, please contact us and the change will be made at the time of renewal. We cannot issue pro rata refunds for downgrading membership.
In either case, a new card will be issued to reflect the change. The expiry date will stay the same.
15. Membership Renewal
15.1. Existing memberships paid by cash, card or cheque.
If you pay for your membership by cash, card or cheque and choose not to renew it, your membership will lapse the day after the expiry date printed on your membership card.
Please note that your membership is non-transferable, and no partial refunds will be given if you cancel the membership during the period of its validity.
15.2. Existing memberships paid by Direct Debit
Memberships paid for by Direct Debit renew automatically, and the subscription fee will be collected for the coming membership period from the bank details we hold on record for the membership. Upon renewal a new membership card will be issued.
We will contact the lead member approximately one month before membership is due for renewal, detailing the deadline by which changes or cancellations need to be made.
To cancel your Historic Royal Palaces membership, please contact us at [email protected] at least 5 working days prior to the payment date and we will confirm the action in writing.
You can also cancel a Direct Debit any time by contacting your bank or building society. Please also notify us so that we can keep your membership account up to date.
If you wish to cancel your membership after the deadline given in your renewal notification, refunds cannot be given.
Please notify the Membership Team if any of your contact details change so we can ensure you receive our renewal communications.
16. CANCELLATION POLICY
You have a right to cancel your membership application within 14 days of purchase and receive a full refund for any membership payment taken.
We will make the reimbursement using the same means of payment as you used for the initial transaction.
If you paid by Direct Debit, you will need to request reimbursement through an indemnity claim with your own bank.
We will charge you for any membership benefits you have taken before you cancel, such as a visit to a palace or purchase of discounted tickets/goods. The charge will be in proportion to what has been performed until you have communicated to us your cancellation from this contract, in comparison with the full contract.
Please contact us for assistance with this by emailing [email protected].
Membership applications cannot be refunded more than 14 days after purchase as the membership fee is treated as a charitable donation, making it non-refundable.
16.1. Existing memberships paid by cash, card or cheque
If you pay for your membership by cash, card or cheque and wish to cancel it, your membership will lapse the day after the expiry date printed on your card.
Please note that your membership is non-transferable, and no partial refunds will be given if you cancel the membership during the period of its validity.
16.2. Existing memberships paid by Direct Debit
If you pay for your membership by Direct Debit and wish to cancel it, you must inform us before the deadline given in your renewal notification, or at least 5 working days before the payment date.
You can also cancel a Direct Debit any time by contacting your bank or building society. We would be grateful if you also notify us so that we can keep your membership account up to date.
If you wish to cancel your membership after the deadline given in your renewal notification, and our renewal procedure has been followed correctly, refunds cannot be given.
A membership payment is classed as a charitable donation, and the guidance of the Charity Commission, to whom we are accountable, prohibits donations from being refunded.
Please notify the Membership Team if any of your contact details change so we can ensure you receive our renewal communications, as well as other member benefits.
17. FURTHER CONDITIONS
We reserve the right to refuse entry and/or membership and/or to revoke membership without refund if a member behaves in a threatening or abusive manner towards any person at any Historic Royal Palaces property, or damages or threatens to damage any of the collections or property of Historic Royal Palaces.
We reserve the right to revoke membership at any time, without financial compensation, if any breach of these terms and conditions is committed.
We reserve the right to change these Terms and Conditions at any time.